About this author
Zack Lynch is author of The Neuro Revolution: How Brain Science Is Changing Our World (St. Martin's Press, July 2009).
He is the founder and executive director of the Neurotechnology Industry Organization (NIO) and co-founder of NeuroInsights. He serves on the advisory boards of the McGovern Institute for Brain Research at MIT, the Center for Neuroeconomic Studies, Science Progress, and SocialText, a social software company. Please send newsworthy items or feedback - to Zack Lynch.
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Brain Waves

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August 25, 2004

Interpreting the Political Brain

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Posted by Zack Lynch

Steven Johnson wrote a nice piece in the NYTimes Magazine this past weekend on the Political Brain. While I've covered this research a few month's back in neuromarketing our next President, Steven adds one very important point to the value of this type of research:

"Whatever conclusions we end up extracting for this line of research won't come exclusively from the neuroscientists. You'd need sociologists and political scientists and philosophers -- not to mention those political strategists -- to make sense of the results, to put them in context, and to propose new avenues of research. The neuroscientists would be mostly there to explain the results in terms of brain anatomy and function, leaving it to the social scientists to interpret the results on the level of human experience. In other words, the scans don't give you answers. They give you new kinds of questions."

For more of Steven's thoughts check out his excellent book Mind Wide Open or his previous guest entries here on Brain Waves.

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